After choosing the best bike lock, your next move is to understand how to lock a bike. Regardless, of the lock types, if you don’t know how to use it, your bike is not secure out there. After all, it’s not just about the lock!
In this brief guide, we will discuss how to lock a bike properly. We will discuss the best bike lock types, and we will also share some tips on how to lock your bike and different ways you can make your bike more secure.
Table Of Contents
Locking your bike in the street
An inappropriately locked bike out there in the street will vanish in no time. Therefore, it is important that you should carefully think about where and how to lock it to prevent any unwanted incident.
You can pick a crowded place to lock your bike. It will help if you lock it with an immovable object because your bike is only as secure as the object that you have chosen to lock it.
Don’t leave any clues for the thieves that you are not going to be around for a while.
Make sure to choose an area that is susceptible to theft. And if you have to go there then go with another lock and don’t leave your bike alone for a long period.
Always lock the frame of your bike because thieves can take the wheels off, and steal the rest of the bike (like the bicyle seat for example).
6 Tips on How to Lock a Bike
The way you lock your bike will depend upon the type of lock you are using. It also depends upon the type of bike you are using and the place where you will secure your bike. But there are certain tips that you need to follow for locking your bike.
1. Locking the frame
Pick an immovable object to secure your bike. If you only use your wheel to secure your bike, then you are giving a good chance to the crook to remove the wheel and get away with the rest of your bike. It is quite obvious but it also happens a lot.
Only attach your lock with the frame of your bike to keep it secure. The only thing that a thief can take away is your front wheel.
2. Keep the lock off the ground
Keep the lock as far from the ground as possible. If it is too close to the ground, then a thief can use a hammer to break it. If you are using a good quality lock, then you don’t need to worry much about it because the cheaper models are more prone to breaking up like this.
But even if it is hammer proof, a thief can use a bolt cutter and use the floor as leverage. So, in either case, you need to keep the lock away from the ground.
Moreover, don’t use your top tube to attach the lock. A thief can use the entire frame to break the lock by lifting the whole hybrid bike and twisting it. There will be more gap between the shackle and lifting and twisting is more convenient. It is better to attach the lock near the seat tube or the down tube.
3. Make the lock difficult to access
Make the lock difficult to access for any thief. When not in easy access, a lock will not be an easy target for a thief. Apart from that, if you can position the keyhole in a position facing downwards then tampering with the lock will become even more difficult.
They may even try to make you leave your bike overnight in the street by putting superglue in the keyhole so that you cannot unlock it. It will give thieves a hard time to break the lock when it is a lot quieter in the streets.
4. Fill the inside of a U-lock
You need to fill the shackle gap of a u-lock with something and try to fill it as much as possible the gap is between the bike and the object with which you have attached it. With this gap filled, you won’t allow a thief to insert a pry bar or a bottle jack to break the lock.
A thief can do this by using leverage techniques. They can insert a scaffolding or a metal pole within this space and twist it until the lock pops open.
Hydraulic bottle jack attacks are also used in the same manner for a U-shaped space. But without any spare room, there is no space to use for leverage attacks.
5. Use more than one lock
One of the best ways to make your bike secure in the streets is to use more than one lock. Also, you need to secure your bike to a rack that is cemented with the ground. A thief will need to carry two different types of tools to break both these locks and get away with your bike.
You can also use a cable with your lock instead of a chain lock. This way you won’t have to carry the heavy chain lock, and you won’t have to leave it on the rack overnight. Just attach your u-lock with the rear wheel and the frame as well as the rack. Now push one end of your cable through the front wheel and a loop right through the other and secure the first one with the lock.
6. Secure it to something heavy and stable
It will help if you are 100% sure when choosing a place to secure your bike. It needs to be extremely heavy and stable. A thief will not be able to lift your bike if it is secure to a solid object. If you have secured your bike with a solid object and locked it properly, then you will greatly reduce the chances of stealing.
You can rely on your u-lock, but when you know that you are going to an unsafe place, then you can bring your other lock with you as well.
If you don’t pick a stable object, then no matter which type of lock you choose, a thief will easily carry your bike away. To avoid thieves, you need to find a pole, a rack, or something that is cemented into the ground. Such immovable objects will make sure that your bike stays where you have secured it.
Best Bike Locks 2020 Comparison
|Grip Lock||0.75 pounds|
|Master Lock Combination Bike Lock||0.85 pounds|
|MYSBIKER bicycle Alarm Disc Brake Lock||1.3 pound|
|Bike U Lock with Cable||3.2 pounds|
|Kryptonite New York Fahgettaboudit Chain||15.5 pounds|
|Fosmon Anti Theft Burglar Bike Alarm||0.5 pounds|
6 Best Types of Bike Locks
Now there are different types of locks that you can choose. Anyone of them can be the best bike lock provided that you know how to use it.
Griplock for bike
Griplocks can secure your bike from the handlebars, and these locks keep the brake levels pulled. Griplocks are very simple to use with your bike and they are not going to cost too much. These locks will keep your bike firmly in place and it cannot be pushed away under any circumstances. A thief is not going to find it easy to move your bike with this lock on.
These locks come with a key, and they are effortless to attach and remove. Another good thing about grip locks is that they can fit most of the bikes without any issues.
Although, this lock is very lightweight and it is compact in structure, but this lock doesn’t deter a thief from picking up your bike and putting it into a truck.
Bike Cable Lock
A cable lock operates like just another bike lock. You need to secure the scooter to an immovable and solid object. For instance, you can secure your bike lock to a bike rack to prevent any theft.
These locks are straightforward to attach to any solid surface.
Due to the heavy chains used in these locks, thieves cannot cut them easily unless they use an angle grinder.
You need to use a key with these locks, but some models also feature a combination lock where you can enter a few numbers for opening the lock just like a briefcase.
These locks can easily get tied to the frame of your bike. This lock is best for regular use if you don’t leave your bike alone for a long time.
Disc Lock for brakes
Disc lock attaches to the brake system of your bike, and it is designed to keep your bike in place. A thief won’t be able to move it, no matter how much effort they make. Normally, you can attach these locks to the disc brake system on the rear of your bike but you can also attach your front wheel with them if you want.
What’s the downside? Bikes are pretty lightweight, and thieves can still pick the bike up with a disc lock and get away with it. But breaking the lock itself is very difficult and it is one of the most secure locks that you can find on the market.
You can use this lock with as a combination of chain lock if you want an extra layer of protection.
D Lock/U Lock
This type of lock goes through the wheel at the swingarm or the legs. You can secure the frame of your bike to a solid and immovable object to secure the bike. You should lock the wheel so that a thief cannot push the bike away. These locks can resist any common tools used by the thieves and are pretty strong.
It would help if you preferred a small-sized u-lock or d-lock over the larger sized locks because they are easy for the thieves to open.
The size of the lock needs to be so small that your fist shouldn’t fit into its shackle gap. A smaller lock doesn’t have any room inside the shackle; therefore, no tool can enter the gap to break it.
Normally a chain lock comes with a key lock or a padlock, and you need to wrap it around the wheel of your bike. Tie it to the forks or swingarms and then wrap it around a solid object to secure the bike in place. A chain lock is one of the most common lock types and it is frequently used due to its simplicity.
This lock is available in different sizes, and you can even create your own if you have a good quality chain and a lock to go with it.
You can also use it in combination with another lock like the d-lock to make your bike a lot more secure.
Alarm system for bike
You can also add an alarm system if you think that you are not going to get far away from your bike. It is important because you need to hear the alarm when it rings.
Some modern alarm system comes with push notifications as well. But being too far off from your bike will give a thief plenty of time to make a move.
For this lock, your bike needs to be in a crowded place for sure so that a loud alarm prevents the thief from stealing your bike.
Final Word on how to lock a bike
When deciding how to lock a bike, there are many ways you can use. Plus, there are different types of locks to choose from as well. There are some small yet integral factors to consider too.
All these lock types have their pros and cons. It is better that you go for more than one lock for your bike for extra security. You also need to use the lock in different ways to make use of them at an optimal level. Using all these tricks will enable you to protect your bike and keep it safe from opportunists.
Choose the best bike lock and go for the best technique to use it. Find a stable place to secure it! Your bike is not going to go anywhere until you want it!
Stay one step ahead of predator!